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War of the Worlds, The (1953, 2005) [original and re-adaptation]

Mighty panorama of Earth-shaking fury as an army from Mars invades! | original guide

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Old Mar 6, 2000, 08:08 PM   #1
Ed Shifres
n/a flights since
Talking Re: A masterpiece in film!

The War of the Worlds(1953) is my second favorite sci-fi film behind The Day The Earth Stood Still(1951). These classic 1950s sci-fi films had more realistic special effects than today's computer-matted phony-looking so-called sfx. Also, today's sci-fi has no memorable music - opening theme scores or incidental music throughout. Hollywood will never again make classics like the aforementioned.
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Old Mar 11, 2000, 01:48 PM   #2
John A. Lang
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Re: A masterpiece in film!

State of the art SFX for the time! George Pal was sheerly a genius. All this without bluescreens, TXM, ILM, computers....

What an excellent film!
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Old Mar 12, 2000, 08:06 PM   #3
Ed Shifres
n/a flights since
Arrow One of the greatest sci-fi films of all time!

The War of the Worlds (1953) is my second favorite sci-fi film (The Day the Earth Stood Still - my very favorite). Haskin and Pal were geniuses, matching a solid story with probably the greatest visual and sound effects of any sci-fi film. The exceptional color, realistic Martian machines, vivid cinematography, excellent incidental music,and a splendid cast, in addition to the charismatic-voiced narration by Cedric Hardwicke, all collaborated in a sci-fi masterpiece. It amazes me that in 1953, Hollywood didn't have an iota of the special effects available today, yet those classic films effects and sound seemed so much more real and believable than today's computer-matted image effects garbage sci-fi films.
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Old Mar 13, 2000, 12:23 AM   #4
James Mills
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Thumbs down Re: A masterpiece in film!

Does anyone else share the same view as me? The view that the film was really BAD. Bearing nothing similar to the book from which it plagurises the name. If you want the full experience of War of the Worlds, read the book.
(I am aware that the effects for the time were good.)
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Old Mar 13, 2000, 07:02 AM   #5
Ed Shifres
n/a flights since
At face value!

Is it not possible for some of you cerebrals to take the film version of what was a book, and give a face value opinion of the film without always comparing it to the book? If so, then what is your opinion of the film The War of The Worlds? Remember, don't bring the book into the scenario. Just the opinion of the film.

My opinion: Here is a film made in 1953. Hollywood did not possess the so-called sophisticated magic of today's special effects, yet the cinematography, color, sound effects, visual effects, and music were realistic, believable, and enticing. Most of today's sci-fi is the same: computer-matted phony-looking visuals, short on story,no charisma, lacking the incidental music and memorable opening scores. These yuppie producers feel they don't need a Bernard Herrmann, or a Ray Harryhausen, or a George Pal, because they have their computer effects.

Give me repeated viewings of The War of The Worlds anyday over today's garbage like Lost in Space: the movie - which unlike the fabulous first season of the series - was GARBAGE...personified.
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Old Apr 17, 2000, 09:39 AM   #6
Chris WW
n/a flights since
Post My opinion.

I liked the movie. It had good special effects and all. And I know we all know the bomb that was dropped would have killed the humans in real life. I am in the process of making a site of the book and movie, which will be up shortly. Keep your eyes on the skies.

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Old Jun 16, 2000, 09:27 PM   #7
n/a flights since
My all-time favorite

First saw this classic sci-fi motion picture as a kid back in '53. One exciting scene after another; still hits home today. When replayed these days on tv, a scene is missing: immediately after incinerating the three flag-waving men, the Martian war machine's heat ray set fire to nearby powerlines and several parked vehicles. That is why the lights went off in town. It was the audience's first real taste of Martian power. A remarkable movie in many ways, especially its depiction of mob rule at the end and a strong religious theme throughout. A huge story told in less than 90 minutes, the mark of a master film maker.
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Old Jun 24, 2000, 12:46 PM   #8
n/a flights since
Talking A Great Flick!

I think that it was great. It scared the hell out of me when I first saw it, I rented it when I was about 10. That was also around the time the series came out. They were good as well, and I think that this film spawned a great series. As for the movie, I say, 1950's, you only have models, strings, and backyard special effects. George Pal did a great job. . . alot could be learned from him and the creative team for that movie to make todays movies, and combined with the imagery we have today to make an excellent newer version of the War of the Worlds.
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Old Jul 10, 2000, 04:03 PM   #9
n/a flights since
Re: A masterpiece in film!

In the original Martian invasions of 1899 and '39 some of the machines were knocked out of comission yet the invafers still proved to have superior technology than the Earth defenders. So how do you upgrade in an erra of H-bombs? Install some shields and boom, unstoppable war machines. Im 19 now and first saw this movie when i was like six, scard the piss out of me then but i still enjoy it now.

The special effects cant hold a candle to today's movie but that doesnt matter, for its time it was great and stood above other movies from that era. Even now the effects are realistic, if you ignore the fact that the sets looked like the country side in a model train set .

I got so into it that I'm even making a 3D movie on my machine and would like some pointers, if you want to know more you see my address [Wyrmshadow@yahoo.com].
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Old Jul 23, 2000, 03:27 AM   #10
frank douglas
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Re: A masterpiece in film!

Best martian movie ever! It still make me think that the martians are still somewhere on Mars.

I absolutely love the "war of the worlds".
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Old May 14, 2001, 04:52 PM   #11
n/a flights since
Thumbs up One of the Greatest SF films ever!

While little of the original book remains in the film, it is interesting to see how they interpreted sections for the the 1950's American audience. This film really captures the main premise of the book about an undefeatable( by man anyway) enemy bent on our total destruction. This is film blew me out of my socks when I was 10 yrs old seeing it in 1972 on TV. Such scenes of apocolyptic destruction have never been so vividly rendered in a film in my opinion this film is perfect in almost every way and made me a fan of SF for life! BTW the book is an astounding piece of ideology and reccomend it highly just don't expect it be anything like the film. That has yet to be made and should be.
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Old Jul 3, 2001, 06:41 AM   #12
NitroTab's Avatar
40 flights since Jul 2001
Location: UK
Re: A masterpiece in film!

Great film,great special effects(for the day),music & sound effects etc etc
but a bit on the short side dont ya think?

Still a top film even to this day
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Old Jun 30, 2003, 03:58 AM   #13
Wing Commander
Omega2064's Avatar
279 flights since Jun 2003
Re: A masterpiece in film!

As has been stated elsewhere, the movie has more the feel of being based on the Orson Wells radio broadcast than on the book.

The effects and music and even the acting are all big budget for their time and the model work is very vivid and still outshines
todays CG atempts.

The deviations from the book are obvious and to many glaring.
But as a movie its still one of the best and has influenced films

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Old Jul 10, 2003, 10:52 PM   #14
n/a flights since
Theme music

While no soundtrack recording exists for WOTW you can get a great recording of the main title music on a CD by the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra. "Fantastic Journey" (Telarc WWTWEL80231) also contains main title music for "The Day the Earth Stood Still", "The Last Starfighter", and "The Black Hole."
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Old Jul 10, 2003, 11:06 PM   #15
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WOTW trailer on DVD

The trailer included on the DVD has some extra footage if you watch carefully.

1. The shot of the initial meteor coming down has a larger explosion as it falls behind the mountain range. My guess is that this shot made it look like it was destroyed.

2. After Forrester says to Col. Heffner "You're going to need reinforcements", the Colonel responds "We'll get them" and yells to someone off-screen. A reporter crouched behind them stands up and says "Look!" as the Martian machines rise up out of the pit.

3. There are alternate shots of the rioters attacking the Pacific Tech truck.

4. A longer shot of Los Angeles in flames as incidental explosions are seen.

The trailer on the DVD looks like it received the same re-mastering as the film itself.
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